Lorenzo Cain on why he got ejected during Thursday’s game against the Rays

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Royals outfielder Lorenzo Cain was ejected in between innings during Thursday’s game against the Rays by home plate umpire Chris Segal for arguing balls and strikes. Cain didn’t like a called strike on a pitch Rays reliever Steve Geltz threw. The strike zone graphic shown by FOX Sports Kansas City showed that the pitch was a bit inside, but it looked much worse because catcher Rene Rivera set up outside and the pitch ran inside. Pitches like that are typically called balls.

Cain wasn’t immediately ejected. In fact, he took a rather diplomatic approach to the dispute, as Matthew DeFranks of 810 WHB in Kansas City details:

Cain, recently nominated to his first All-Star team, had hit his eighth home run of the season earlier in that game. He’s currently hitting .312/.371/.489 with 41 RBI and 17 stolen bases while playing terrific defense in center field.

Pirates hire Ben Cherington as their new general manager

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The Pittsburgh Pirates have hired Ben Cherington as the team’s new general manager. They do so after the general manager meetings ended, but better late than never.

Cherington served as GM of the Boston Red Sox for four years, winning the World Series in 2013, but resigned during the 2015 season after Dave Dombrowski was named Boston’s new president of baseball operations. Which was a defacto demotionn for Cherington who, until then, had the final say in baseball decisions. Dombrowski, of course, was fired late in the season this year. Cherington went on to work for the Toronto Blue Jays as a vice president, but was seen as biding his time for another GM position. Now he has one.

Cherington takes over in Pittsburgh for executive vice president and general manager Neal Huntington, who was fired after a 12 years at the helm. Also fired was team president Frank Coonelly. Travis Williams replaced Coonelly recently. While the Pirates experienced a few years of contention under Huntington and Coonelly, they have slid out of contention in recent years as the club has traded away promising players for little return, all while cutting payroll. There’s a very big rebuilding job ahead of Cherington.

The first move he’ll have to make: hire a manager, as the team still hasn’t replaced Clint Hurdle since he was dismissed in the final weekend of the regular season.